engineering_framing

Built like a fortress  

King Kong Can’t Touch This
(Fay Wray would feel secure)

A sleek citadel designed to rise above the world-class skyline of Manhattan, Walker Tower was built as a strong fortress to house one of the city’s telecommunication nerve centers.

Walker Tower is a concrete-encased, heavy-steel framed building (unlike newer designs that employ either a lightweight concrete slab and column design or a lighter steel frame). Its floor slabs are designed to carry live loads of up to 100 lbs per square foot compared to the 40 lbs per square foot typical of residential buildings.

The structure could easily bear an impregnable steel vault, a fleet of armored vehicles, or a nation’s store of gold bullion. Erected in 1929, an age of dreadnoughts and blockbuster bearing zeppelins, it was designed to withstand great stresses, perhaps even a stock market crash.